Mike Moustakas got screwed by an awful market, again

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Justin Verlander is on to something

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On Monday, Houston Astros’ ace Justin Verlander took to Twitter to complain about the glacial free agent market. (On second thought, glaciers are receding faster than free agents are being signed, so maybe that analogy doesn’t work so well anymore.) I’ve got a nitpick about what he thinks the “great performance window” for non-Justin Verlander players is, but otherwise, he’s spot-on with his take:

100 or so free agents left unsigned.  System is broken. They blame “rebuilding” but that’s BS. You’re telling me you couldn’t sign Bryce [Harper] or Manny [Machado] for 10 years and go from there? Seems like a good place to start a rebuild to me.  26-36 is a great performance window too.

The system is broken from the players’ point of view, but it’s working just fine from where teams are sitting. The “rebuilding” excuse is at the center of all of this, and for some reason fans eat it up while too many media members do not question the real motives behind teams that use it. As Verlander wonders, if a team is rebuilding, then wouldn’t they want to get a young star when they’re available, so that they don’t have to hope there is one out there to acquire at the moment they’re ready to shift from rebuilding to competing?

Continue reading “Justin Verlander is on to something”

Labor peace is a lie, pt. 4: Selig cries poor, then colludes once more

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Reader mailbag: Rule changes, MiLB organizing, Yasiel Puig

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Let’s judge MLB’s rule change proposals

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Hastening arbitration and raising the minimum salary could help free agency

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Labor peace is a lie, pt. 3: The rise of Bud Selig and the 1994 strike

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The Pirates don’t respect your intelligence

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The Pirates have, somewhat quietly, been one of the worst parts of the last two horrid offseasons for players. A year ago, they claimed attendance drops had “a meaningful impact on how we can build a roster in 2018.” For some reason, they felt the solution to those attendance issues involved trading talented, arbitration-eligible starter Gerrit Cole to the Astros for a bleak return, while also sending the most popular player of his era in Pirates’ history, Andrew McCutchen, to the Giants. Oh, Pittsburgh also didn’t sign a single free agent the entire offseason, but denied that they were doing anything but trying to remain competitive.

Don’t worry, there’s another reason to be upset about all of that, in case that wasn’t enough: all of this was done in the same offseason that every team was getting at least a $50 million check from Disney for the sale of BAMTech. That $50 million would have covered the last year of McCutchen’s deal, Cole’s 2018, and a whole lot more. You know, the kinds of things that might have made for a more intriguing Pirates’ team, an actually competitive one, and not led to their worst attendance figures since 1996, which was also the the third-worst attendance in MLB. All of this just three years after they had their highest single-season attendance ever, too.

Continue reading “The Pirates don’t respect your intelligence”

Labor peace is a lie, pt. 2: Free agency, concessions, and collusion

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MLB is fighting to suppress Minor League Baseball wages again

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